B-156702, JUL. 7, 1965

B-156702: Jul 7, 1965

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FC: FURTHER REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER OF APRIL 23. YOU WERE REASSIGNED FROM YOUR OVERSEAS STATION TO THE ARMY COMMAND ACCOUNTING OFFICE (6A 6026). DISALLOWED YOUR CLAIM FOR THE REASON THAT YOU DID NOT FURNISH A CERTIFICATE FROM THE COMMANDING OFFICER AT YOUR TEMPORARY DUTY STATION TO THE EFFECT THAT THE UTILIZATION OF EXISTING GOVERNMENT FACILITIES (QUARTERS) WAS IMPRACTICABLE. YOU SAY THAT THE GOVERNMENT FACILITIES AT FORT BENJAMIN HARRISON WERE NOT ADEQUATE AND DID NOT MEET THE MINIMUM STANDARDS ESTABLISHED BY ARMY REGULATIONS 210-14 (SHOWN IN YOUR LETTER AS AR 210- 4). A MEMBER OF A UNIFORMED SERVICE IS ENTITLED TO RECEIVE TRAVEL AND TRANSPORTATION ALLOWANCES FOR TRAVEL PERFORMED UNDER ORDERS UPON A CHANGE OF PERMANENT STATION.

B-156702, JUL. 7, 1965

TO CAPTAIN DONALD W. LIAKO, FC:

FURTHER REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER OF APRIL 23, 1965, IN EFFECT REQUESTING RECONSIDERATION OF OUR SETTLEMENT DATED APRIL 14, 1965, WHICH DISALLOWED YOUR CLAIM FOR ADDITIONAL PER DIEM INCIDENT TO TEMPORARY DUTY PERFORMED DURING THE PERIOD FEBRUARY 3 TO 28, 1965.

BY LETTER ORDER 11-43 DATED NOVEMBER 12, 1964, YOU WERE REASSIGNED FROM YOUR OVERSEAS STATION TO THE ARMY COMMAND ACCOUNTING OFFICE (6A 6026), PRESIDIO OF SAN FRANCISCO, CALIFORNIA, WITH TEMPORARY DUTY EN ROUTE AT FORT BENJAMIN HARRISON, INDIANA, FOR THE PURPOSE OF ATTENDING SCHOOL FOR A PERIOD OF APPROXIMATELY 10 WEEKS, TO REPORT THERE NOT LATER THAN JANUARY 17, 1965. OUR SETTLEMENT DATED APRIL 14, 1965, DISALLOWED YOUR CLAIM FOR THE REASON THAT YOU DID NOT FURNISH A CERTIFICATE FROM THE COMMANDING OFFICER AT YOUR TEMPORARY DUTY STATION TO THE EFFECT THAT THE UTILIZATION OF EXISTING GOVERNMENT FACILITIES (QUARTERS) WAS IMPRACTICABLE. IN YOUR LETTER OF APRIL 23, 1965, YOU SAY THAT THE GOVERNMENT FACILITIES AT FORT BENJAMIN HARRISON WERE NOT ADEQUATE AND DID NOT MEET THE MINIMUM STANDARDS ESTABLISHED BY ARMY REGULATIONS 210-14 (SHOWN IN YOUR LETTER AS AR 210- 4).

SECTION 404 OF TITLE 37, U.S.C. PROVIDES THAT UNDER REGULATIONS PRESCRIBED BY THE SECRETARIES CONCERNED, A MEMBER OF A UNIFORMED SERVICE IS ENTITLED TO RECEIVE TRAVEL AND TRANSPORTATION ALLOWANCES FOR TRAVEL PERFORMED UNDER ORDERS UPON A CHANGE OF PERMANENT STATION, OR OTHERWISE, OR WHEN AWAY FROM HIS DESIGNATED POST OF DUTY. PARAGRAPH M1150-5 OF THE JOINT TRAVEL REGULATIONS, PROMULGATED PURSUANT TO THAT AUTHORITY, PROVIDES THAT THE TERM "GOVERNMENT QUARTERS" MEANS ANY SLEEPING ACCOMMODATIONS OWNED OR LEASED BY THE UNITED STATES GOVERNMENT, PROVIDED THEY ARE MADE AVAILABLE TO, OR UTILIZED BY, THE MEMBER CONCERNED. PARAGRAPH M4451 OF THE REGULATIONS REQUIRES MEMBERS IN A TRAVEL STATUS TO UTILIZE AVAILABLE GOVERNMENT QUARTERS TO THE MAXIMUM EXTENT PRACTICABLE AND PROVIDES FOR A STATEMENT BY THE COMMANDING OFFICER AT THE POINT OF TEMPORARY DUTY AS TO THE NONAVAILABILITY OF GOVERNMENT QUARTERS IF THE LENGTH OF TEMPORARY DUTY IS FOR A PERIOD OF 24 HOURS OR MORE. IN VIEW OF SUCH PROVISIONS, THE EXISTENCE OF ANY AVAILABLE USABLE GOVERNMENT QUARTERS PROVIDING SLEEPING ACCOMMODATIONS WOULD PRECLUDE ENTITLEMENT TO THE QUARTERS PORTION OF PER DIEM TO MEMBERS ON TEMPORARY DUTY AT SUCH PLACE, NOTWITHSTANDING THAT THEY FAILED TO OCCUPY SUCH QUARTERS.

WHILE THE COMMANDING OFFICER IN STATEMENT DATED JANUARY 29, 1965, DETERMINED THAT THE WOODEN BARRACKS AT FORT BENJAMIN HARRISON WERE INADEQUATE UNDER THE PROVISIONS OF PARAGRAPH 14 OF ARMY REGULATIONS 210- 14, THAT REGULATION RELATES TO THE ASSIGNMENT OF QUARTERS AT THE MEMBER'S PERMANENT STATION AND SUCH DETERMINATION DID NOT ESTABLISH THE NONAVAILABILITY OF GOVERNMENT QUARTERS FOR PER DIEM PURPOSES AS REQUIRED BY PARAGRAPH M4451 OF THE JOINT TRAVEL REGULATIONS. ACCORDINGLY, THE SETTLEMENT OF APRIL 14, 1965, DISALLOWING YOUR CLAIM WAS CORRECT AND MUST BE SUSTAINED.

WITH REGARD TO YOUR STATEMENT THAT OTHER MEMBERS WERE ISSUED CERTIFICATES OF NONAVAILABILITY OF GOVERNMENT QUARTERS BY THE POST COMMANDER, INCLUDING SOME MEMBERS WHO OCCUPIED THE SAME BOQ BUILDING AS YOU DID, WE HAVE NO SPECIFIC INFORMATION WHETHER GOVERNMENT QUARTERS WERE OR WERE NOT AVAILABLE FOR ALL MEMBERS AT FORT BENJAMIN HARRISON DURING THE PERIOD OF YOUR CLAIM. THE CORRECTNESS OF THE PER DIEM PAYMENTS TO THOSE MEMBERS WHO YOU SAY WERE ISSUED CERTIFICATES OF NONAVAILABILITY OF GOVERNMENT QUARTERS WILL BE OF CONSIDERATION IN THE AUDIT OF THE DISBURSING OFFICERS' ACCOUNTS. HOWEVER, THE FACT IF ESTABLISHED THAT OTHER MEMBERS WERE ERRONEOUSLY PAID PER DIEM, AFFORDS NO BASIS FOR ALLOWING YOUR CLAIM.